OPINION | Beware of passion projects writes Catherine Wijnberg

“Lasting success is a balance of confidence, skill and applied wisdom. A passion project is the undoing of that.”

The art of business is harnessing the 3-way power of self-confidence, skill and applied wisdom to deliver business concepts that succeed. But what can we do if our power gets out of balance? 

When we first meet entrepreneurs entering our accelerators we ask them to share their goals and ambitions. The two extremes we see are, on the one end, those who struggle to see abundance and growth, and on the other end, those who are wildly over-confident, sometimes even to the point of delusion. In between are leaders who harness the essential enthusiasm for business. 

One of the risks we may face is over-investment. Not just from a financial perspective, but from a personal, energetic one too.  

Over-investing financially is fairly obvious – if we bet too much on a risky project and it fails, we lose money. 

Personal over-investment is similar. It’s putting too much of one’s personal energy, ego and ‘self’ into a project and going overboard with passion for it. When our sense of self-worth is connected to the result – when we are so passionate about something that we lose our sense of balance and perspective. 

Being over-invested is like having a ‘crush’ or a lover. We are so blinded by our emotions that our mind doesn’t function as it should. Our intelligence and wisdom is diminished and we fail to see, or to acknowledge the dangers. 

By Catherine Wijnberg – Founder and CEO of Fetola

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